When he returned to the auction house, he bid farewell to Brigand and instantly left with his three slaves in tow. Wearing his black cloak, Derrick led them out of the city to immediately set off to Akata. Now that he had the means to expand, his drive was through the limits.

However, Derrick's lack of foresight came to bite him in the ass. He had planned to come here and recruit specialists but... he had forgotten about transportation. He had grown accustomed to flying on Io, which had made him disregard everyone else.

On top of that, he had completely emptied his wallet, crushing the idea of hiring a coachman. The only option remaining was walking. Nevertheless, he was lucky that his three companions had sturdy physiques. They would simply take longer... or so he thought.

He hadn't accounted for the fact that there was a dwarf in his ranks. One of Derrick's objective was to remain low profile, and it went out the window when an enemy race freely walked the roads. Every passerby threw weird looks, and some even shouted insults. Derrick knew he only had himself to blame for these oversights.

"Do you know what I am?"

Since they had plenty of time, Derrick decided to mentally share information with them. They would find out everything eventually, so it was better if they dealt with the shock beforehand and accepted the situation.

When they heard the question, the trio looked at themselves, confused. Since they had the same master, a mental network had formed, allowing them to mentally communicate.

"You're obviously human"

William Enceworth, the scholar, was the first to respond. He had been intrigued by the question.

"You're correct, but what is my path?"

The man could only shrug because he didn't have the skill to determine such things. He was out of his depth.

"A fighter. You always wear a cloak, and I bet it's to hide your armor"

The next answer came from his general, Eloise Tornomi.

"You're correct on that front, but I'm a fighter out of necessity, not by choice. It's not my main path"

After failing twice, they started deliberating, which made Derrick chuckle. Forming early bonds was always a good thing. When they finally reached a consensus, it was the turn of the dwarf, Fomamli Trollfall, to speak with his low and raspy voice.

"You're a Sorcerer because you had enough money to buy all of us"

Derrick shook his head once again and responded.

"Close enough, but no. I'm a Necromancer"

Silence and shock. These were the only two things palpable in the atmosphere around the group. It was the first time that Derrick had seen fear in their eyes, causing his laughter to erupt.

"Are Necromancers that bad?

They didn't know how to answer. They had never met one, but they had heard of their inhuman experiments and bottomless blood-lust. In the end, it was the general that shared her thoughts.

"You're currently our Master, and we will serve you regardless of what you are or do, but we'd like to know your objective"

Derrick's mouth curled upwards before taking a big breath.

"Dominating the world"

The sentence sent the three reeling even harder, wondering if they had heard correctly. What the hell was this person saying?! Before they could speculate any further, Derrick continued.

"I've created a town, deep in the forest, named Akata. It currently has 1500 inhabitants and 140 soldiers. I bought you all to bolster my expansion plans"

This man... was trying to go up against Empires?! Was he crazy?!

"That's why I value you and said that I wouldn't mistreat you. What I'm offering is a new lease on life. Of course, I'll honor the agreement I made. If you work adequately for 6 months, I'll pledge a magical oath to release you in another 6. If you want to leave afterwards, you'll be free to do so. I just want you to keep in mind that this is a chance to take revenge on those who have harmed you, and your loved ones"

The statement sent them in thought. They had suffered crushing defeats, losing those they cared about in the process. It would be a lie if they said that they didn't consider taking revenge, but who could offer them such a chance? They were like grains of sand in the desert.

"Instead of words, I'll show you all why I deserve to be followed. I'm sure you'll be surprised. Of course, the reputation of necromancers isn't completely false... I take visceral pleasure in killing those who oppose me..."

Derrick's twisted smile sent shivers through their bodies. The man was clearly a dangerous predator.


"My Lord, there was an anomaly reported on the roads to the forest"

"Oh? What was it?"

"A Dwarf walking with a group of people"

The man in charge frowned.

"It was exposed to everyone?"

"Yes. It wasn't clear whether it was a slave or not"

"These incompetent morons... Send a reminder throughout the city that if a slave of those filthy races is seen in public, their owner will be put to death"

Rage and contempt were shining through his blue eyes...


Instead of taking a day of flight, their trip back to Akata had taken them a full week. After passing through the farming lands of Terra, they had arrived at the outskirts of the forest and entered.

Derrick had then showed them Io, and they had jumped back in fright. To their defense, the creature did look terrifying.

After slowly accepting that the fact that the half-bat half-eagle creature couldn't hurt them, Derrick made them ride him. At first, they categorically refused, but after a surge of courage from Eloise, the others soon followed.

When Derrick arrived in the town, he was shocked. The little settlement was gone, replaced by a bustling town that seemed to never take a breather. Even the trio was flabbergasted. A worker recognizing Derrick immediately ran away, making him heartily laugh. He knew that he went reporting to his supervisor.

A few minutes later, that same worker was accompanied by two people. One was Lacha, who was overjoyed when she saw Derrick, and Jack, who seemed to be quite grumpy.

She was about to leap into Derrick's embrace when she noticed three new figures behind him, one of which was a woman. Seeing her displeasure, Derrick took her in his embrace and immediately kissed her.

"Don't be jealous. They are our new residents, and they'll be working harder than anyone else"

The trio's bond deepened during their trip and when they saw Derrick's mischievous smile, shivers ran through their bodies, and they couldn't help but feel under duress.

Derrick then turned his attention to Jack, who didn't dare make eye contact.

"Express yourself. If you don't, I won't know how to help you"

"Your Highness, even though we've managed to build facilities to lodge every habitant, I'm having trouble assigning tasks to crews of the other villages... Let's just say that their attitudes regressed since you left"

Derrick's aura suddenly burst forth and everyone present felt a primal fear...

"It's time to shed some blood"


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